Sugar baron Murugesh Nirani interacts with city scribes
Mysore/Mysuru: Declaring that the Pandavapura Sugar Factory (PSSK-Pandavapura Sahakara Sakkare Karkhane) that he has recently taken on a 40-year lease, will be started in a month, Chairman of Bagalkot District based Nirani Sugars Group and BJP MLA from Bilgi, Murugesh Nirani, who is also a former Minister, said that he was determined to take the factory to its past glory.
He was speaking at an interaction meet organised by Mysuru District Journalists Association (MDJA) at Patrakarthara Bhavan here this morning.
Reflecting on his past, Nirani said he started a Sugar Factory in Bagalkot district 25 years ago, seeing the plight of sugarcane growers of the region. Stating that there was only Godavari Sugar Factory in the region then for crushing sugarcane, he said he started his own sugar factory as a challenge and now his Group owns seven Sugar Mills.
“I started my first Sugar Factory with a crushing capacity of just 500 tonnes per day. But now my Group is collectively crushing 50,000 tonnes of sugarcane per day. The Mills also have Power Co-generation Plants, Ethanol and CNG Production Units. With the passage of time and the success achieved in the Sugar Industry, the Group has expanded into other sectors such as Cement, Medical care, Hospitality and Education,” he said.
Claiming that his Group of Sugar Companies is the biggest producer of Sugar and Ethanol in South India, Nirani said that he has plans to supply Ethanol to the Aviation Industry as well in the coming days as it is used for Air Turbine fuel.
Coming back to PSSK, Nirani said that the machines in the factory are getting rusted mainly because of lack of maintenance. “It will take at least two years to replace all these old machineries with the latest ones. I do not want to cause further delay in crushing spending time on replacement as this would cause a lot of hardship for the growers of the region. As such I have decided to start crushing in right earnest by best using the available machinery in the factory and to take up replacement of machinery in a phased manner,” the Sugar baron said.
Noting that the decades old PSSK has a historical significance too as it was started during the times of the erstwhile Mysore Maharajas, he said that Krishnaraja Wadiyar is his role model and he will work hard towards fulfilling the vision that the Maharaja had for the Mill.
Replying to a query on the pending wages of the Factory employees, Nirani said that he has learnt that there were 130 employees in the Mill when it as shut a couple of years ago and they have not been paid wages. Assuring that he will clear the pending wages within a day of the official signing of the lease contract, Nirani said that there is no scope for politics in the running of the Mill.
“Though I belong to the BJP politically, I am an entrepreneur first with no political attachments when it comes to running Factories and other commercial establishments. And there will be no scope for party or caste politics in the running of the Mill,” he maintained.
He further said that no worker, who was serving in the factory, will be retrenched and all of them will be re-employed.
MDJA President C.K. Mahendra, General Secretary K.J. Lokesh Babu and Vice-President (City) M. Subramanya were present at the interaction meet.